I found this interesting article over at, of all places, Businessweek. It’s title, The Greatest Running Shoe Never Sold. Here’s an excerpt.
Athletic brands spend millions every year trying to build a better sneaker that will propel them to the front of the $6.3 billion running shoe business, one of the biggest and most visible areas of sporting goods, with 11 percent growth in 2011, according to industry analyst SportsOneSource. Nearly all sneakers have a sole that looks like lasagna, composed of layers of rubber, foam, and plastic. The fluffy foam is made from ethylene-vinyl acetate, or EVA, which has its critics: EVA adds weight to shoes, and lab tests show it requires more energy per stride. Running shoe companies have long sought an EVA substitute that absorbs shock but also returns more energy. “Consumers like the cushioned feeling associated with a conventional running shoe,” says Darren Stefanyshyn, a University of Calgary researcher and former chairperson of the Footwear Biomechanics Group. “If you could provide that without using foam, you’d have a winner.”
Although I’m enjoying my half-minimalist Chi running style, just like running watches, I enjoy trying new shoes. Just ask my kids as they always have a name for them. For example, I’m wearing my bumble bee shoes right now (Merrell trail glove). Some of the technology discussed is almost as jargon filled as reading a GPS running watch review. But, an interesting read for today.